An essential tour de force for poetry buffs.



A striking anthology of interviews that sheds light on one of the most iconic poetry institutions in New York City.

When it first opened in 1966, the Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church was a place for poets to gather, listen to the vibrant new voices making noise in the city, and, more importantly, collaborate with their peers. It opened “out of the need for a stable ongoing reading series/gathering point/community center for the overlapping circles of poets in downtown NYC.” In celebration of the Poetry Project’s 50th anniversary, Berrigan (Come in Alone, 2016, etc.) has assembled a series of interviews that were originally published in the Poetry Project newsletter. The newsletter had as a mission to instigate cross-generational conversations, featuring writers from various decades discussing contemporary issues in the writing/poetry community. The work “will reward readers who take on the experience of reading it from beginning to end”—and the reward is no small thing. Readers have the pleasure of encountering Charles North discussing “scenes,” Kenneth Koch characterizing anthologies, Alice Notley talking about the construction of narratives, Ed Sanders discussing Allen Ginsberg and the New York School, Bernadette Mayer shedding light on her vocation as a writer, Fred Moten exploring the masculinity/femininity of discourse, and Anne Waldman ranting about the joys of collaboration. This anthology provides strong historical context for a space that championed linguistic risks, welcomed diversity with open arms, and celebrated a sociopolitical agenda. Berrigan explains that the Poetry Project “wasn’t just a place to go give a reading and cross off some list of desired venues. The point was to be exposed, to expose your rawest risk-taking work to a discerning audience, one that would let you know right there whether it’s working or not, and to participate in that as communal process.”

An essential tour de force for poetry buffs.

Pub Date: April 4, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-940696-39-3

Page Count: 440

Publisher: Wave Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2017

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This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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An extravaganza in Bemelmans' inimitable vein, but written almost dead pan, with sly, amusing, sometimes biting undertones, breaking through. For Bemelmans was "the man who came to cocktails". And his hostess was Lady Mendl (Elsie de Wolfe), arbiter of American decorating taste over a generation. Lady Mendl was an incredible person,- self-made in proper American tradition on the one hand, for she had been haunted by the poverty of her childhood, and the years of struggle up from its ugliness,- until she became synonymous with the exotic, exquisite, worshipper at beauty's whrine. Bemelmans draws a portrait in extremes, through apt descriptions, through hilarious anecdote, through surprisingly sympathetic and understanding bits of appreciation. The scene shifts from Hollywood to the home she loved the best in Versailles. One meets in passing a vast roster of famous figures of the international and artistic set. And always one feels Bemelmans, slightly offstage, observing, recording, commenting, illustrated.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 1955

ISBN: 0670717797

Page Count: -

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1955

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